GLOBAL MARITIME DISTRESS AND SAFETY SYSTEM
The Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) is the international radio safety system mandated by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) for ships at sea. The GMDSS was implemented on February 1, 1999 through amendments to the Safety of Life At Sea (SOLAS) Convention. The primary purpose of GMDSS is to automate and improve emergency communications for the world's shipping industry.
Compulsory ships must carry at least two persons holding a GMDSS Radio Operator License for distress and safety radiocommunications purposes. In the United States, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is the issuing authority for the GMDSS Radio Operator's License. The FCC GMDSS Radio Operator's License is obtained by passing two written examinations. FCC exam element 1 covers basic radio law and operating practice. FCC exam element 7 covers GMDSS Radio Operating procedures.
In addition to requirements of the FCC, the U.S. Coast Guard requires holders of Standards of Training, Certification, and Watchkeeping (STCW) certificates to obtain an endorsement as "Radio Operator in the GMDSS." U.S. implementation of the STCW treaty mandates that all Merchant Marine deck officers complete resident training at a U.S. Coast Guard approved GMDSS course. The U.S. Coast Guard will issue a STCW GMDSS endorsement upon successful completion of such a course.
Please consider our publications, study materials, training course, and consultation services to meet your GMDSS needs. We were the first to present GMDSS Radio Operator training course in the United States. GMDSS is our specialty, not a sideline. Our experienced Radio Officer instructors have successfully trained hundreds of officers at numerous venues. Personalized attention and hands-on training with GMDSS equipment is a cornerstone of our approach to GMDSS certification. Please let us know how we can help.